Summary of the amusement
Clarity Nice visits the headquarters of Herbaline in Orange County, a herbal, diet and weight prevention company, known for its aggressive marketing methods. Seeing on a corporate chart that the president of the company, Lyle Matchett, has never been seen and is not shown anywhere in the annual report of the company, Clarity decides to explore the company's premises afterhours, and stumbles upon an area inside the company building labeled emotician office. Intrigued by a word that she has never heard, she opens the door and gets in. Emotician Coley Manglove finds the Malibu teleoperator in her office and reveals to her the secretive project that she has been told to carry out by the head of human studies at Herbaline: A chart of emotion that can be used to describe the personality of employees and to elicit sales from a customer, even those reticent to buy Herbaline products.
The next day, Coleman Cartmel opened an office door for Clarity and Lanai, letting them inside the emoticon testing room of the language facility, a room filled with hundreds of documents, unsent memos, and letters sent to various employees within Herbaline, describing sales issues, and depicting emoticons and smiley iconographic variations, which Clarity had never seen before, such as the large smiley face with a 'HAVE YOU FOUND YOUR EMOTION TODAY' bandana.
"To get rid of your consistent problem with language, which creates a problem at Herbaline, you'll have to perform a test for us, the emoticon chart test," said Cartmel.
Clarity entered the small room mirrored after a genuine eye testing room used by those who wanted to renew the driver's license. At Herbaline, the oral emoticon chart test replaced the vision test, and a series of emoticons of various sizes replaced the vision test letters of a traditional eye test. The emoticon chart was the chart that Clarity and Lanai needed to restore back to 'normal', their tendency to become emotional and to use 'disagreement language', according to Cartmel's meaning or definition of normality. Clarity was appalled by the simplified view of life at Herbaline. To them, life was a smiley. Cartmel placed Clarity nine feet away from the company's basic emoticon chart.
"What do you see?" Asked Cartmel, "this is all you need to know about your own emotions."
"A chart filled with emoticons, the actual smiley, yellowish, round and smiling, several smileys of various sizes, more than ten or twenty, in several rows."
"It's a lot more than a chart, each smiley drives an emotion," said Cartmel. Clarity went over a few smileys pointed by Cartmel on the chart, such as those indicating suntanning, tongue out, wink, confused, don't say anything related to something other than sales, or the grumpy emoticon, which was there to be interpreted by employees as 'grumpy about a sales target not quite reached'.
"An emoticon is simply a way to let your friends know how you feel, about anything," said Lanai.
Cartmel pressed a button, and one of the emoticons started moving above and around its peers, the smiley turning into a grin. Clarity began to talk, expressing her view.
"That's just an emoticon, it's a bit annoying, because it's moving on the screen. It's superficial, an emoticon does not cover the full range of human emotion, people need to talk to each other," said Clariy.
"But this allows you to choose your emotions, based on our range of emoticons," said Cartmel.
Cartmel pressed another button and a wood panel showing twenty four rows and ten columns of emoticons built out of wood, painted yellow, emerged from the wall, out of an Oklahoma Mart business table top.
"This is ridiculous," said Clarity, "a person does not always chooses her emotion and how they feel, emotion arises out of a particular situation or a relationship, a person is more than a simple, stupid emoticon."
Cartmel sighed and pressed on a tired face emoticon in the middle of the panel. The tired-and-confused emoticon popped out as well from the left hand corner of the emoticon panel, and a caption that said 'help her, help that woman' appeared right next to the confused emoticon.
"This is what you're saying when you're talking the way you do about them, you overreact to these emoticons," said Cartmel, "you're not properly tuned emotionally." He added. "At Herbaline, this chart drives our relationships. Between us, that is, our relational group of associates ensures that all relationships have sales hierarchy guidance here, according to this chart of emotional maturity. In fact, everyone goes through this chart until they react properly to it, without acting emotional."
Cartmel pressed surreptitiously on a smiley wearing a bandana showing the words 'say hi to Mr. Cartmel, your sales instructor', rising up from the depths of level two of the business table panel. Cartmel pressed Clarity to associate several emoticons with various emotions or sentences, and then to extrapolate the emotion to a sales context. He handled her the results of the test.
"Some of the answers are all right, but several are outright out of our planned sales model. For instance, if a customer is annoyed, you cannot simply leave the customer like you wrote, and tell him that maybe he's looking for a different product, you have to persist until the customer opens up to you."
"If the customer has a bad day, I let the customer ramble, but I don't insist on closing a sale," said Clarity. Cartmel shook his head in disagreement and called Ivy through the interphone.
Ivy came inside the emotion testing room. She gave out to Clarity several pamphlets offering emoticon assistance courses to those employees of Herbaline either showing no interest in the course, or showing simply average results on the chart test.
Of particular interest to Ivy was the money-roulette icon smiley, a box-sized yellow box smiley showing signs of worn out gambling tiredness, looking at you in general, with the dumb look of a phoney springlike toy. The purpose of the emoticon was to show how gambling was detrimental to your wellbeing, after engaging in a just a few roulette, buck-roulette throws at the local casino or gambling shop. Clarity kept reflecting on the title of the booklet offered by Ivy, matching the emoticon on its cover showing its arm muscles, Herbaline emoticon sales potential booklet, noticing how expensive the course was, how Herbaline associated a sale with perseverence, and how it associated a good Herbaline salesperson with an unsuccessful one at her previous job. Failure at something in a job was nearly a prerequisite to be a good salesperson at Herbaline, and the bigger the setback, the more Herbaline paid attention to the person. She kept the booklet in her pocket.
Clarity and Lanai spent a morning putting order to several piles of paper depicting surveys filled out by people, describing their preference for several kinds of stuff, ranging from furniture products to food cart and lingerie, to credit card, phone card and coin vending machine delivery services. The logic, the underlying sales principles of Cartmel, were not readily available to many of the employees at Herbaline. To know them, to know these principles, required spending thousands of dollars in courses offered by Herbaline, courses spanning hundreds of hours.
Clarity stepped closer to the emoticon wood panel shown by Cartmel. She felt the danger of social disconnect, were she to follow these linguistic suggestions to rid a person of her so-called 'sales language refusal' traits. As a result of her critical judgement and clarity of discernment between good and a hoax, Clarity had done pretty well. She disregarded the status of Cartmel as a sales guru. Looking at the positive side of things was tiring, always performing, always pulled by the bottom line. Having to think positive as an obligation made no sense, thought Clarity, glancing at Lanai. It was taking away some of their natural emotion range, while considering all of the emotions listed in the genuine chart of emotions made them human. Clarity held one of the surveys in her hand, noticing a smudge in one of the pages. She turned to Ivy, who'd been watching them all morning.
"So what drives the sale for Herbaline?" Asked Clarity. "Why is it such a successful company driving the sale of its products home, all the way to getting cash from a customer for something not really that useful to them, herbal products, compared to basic food items or shelter, that is."
"That's in our sales potential booklet," said Ivy. "Ambi does not understand that a single sale drives all others and that perception drives a sale. That is why she is placed in the antisale room. That's where Ambi is, and that's where you're going to end up if you keep questioning the booklet."
Clarity had an idea to find Ambi. She leafed through the sales booklet of Herbaline, finding a paragraph on the notion of antisale, all of the behaviors which prevented a sale or alienated the customer from the salesperson, which included open disagreement with the customer by the salesperson. After filling out a final survey on her bar hopping habits, Clarity got back to her room with Lanai.
"Let's go find Ambi in the antisale room," said Clarity.
Clarity and Lanai found the area where Ambi was held, the antisale room, kept confidential from the rest of the facility by a door showing the triangle of Herbaline values. These values added up to three, and they were clearly written in the company's annual report. First, there was other people's work, labeled opw, then there was the ever-present sale persistence, which drove sales and company profits, and completing the triangle was the so-called customer relational affinity. Clarity opened the sales booklet and read the paragraph on the Herbaline sales triangle. The explanation was that customer relational affinity, networking with prospective customers that is, and establishing a close rapport, in addition to other's people work, delegating your own sale to lower level salespersons, or to peers, these two items or aspects combined with persistence, resulted in a sale, the bottom line of Herbaline. Clarity typed the word antisale on a touchscreen using a keypad which was set on a small pedestal made of steel. The touchscreen acted as door lock to the antisale room. By placing the word antisale outside the sales triangle with her finger, the door opened.
Clarity saw Ambi sitting on a chair beside her bed, covered with a pink and white quilt on top of it. Ambi was reading on a kindle-like device, the book No sales logo, and one titled No purchase Doctrine, books written by sales activist Naomi Clemenvine, arguing that regular people could live very well without purchasing so many items. Noticing that Ambi was barely paying attention to them, Clarity stepped closer and began speaking to the recluse.
"Ambi, come with us, we'll take you to a regular room, don't you want to leave this place?"
"No one can leave Herbaline if they disagree with their official sales policy," said Ambi. "If you two made it to the antisale room, it means Coley knows you disagree with some aspect of company policy. She probably wants you in this room." A television screen lit up in one of the corners of the room, showing Coley Manglove looking grumpy, matching the grumpy emoticon shown by Cartmel earlier that day. Ivy had noticed their disappearance from the survey area and their room. Manglove was looking into the camera, and began talking to them.
"Get back to your room, Clarity, immediately, with your friend, you'll find a report on your shelf, I want you to read it."
TO BE CONTINUED, HERE, THE EMOTION SCALE
All characters over 21
BANANA HUMOR for Adults previously released:
Nook, Apple Ipad, Samsung Galaxy Tablet,
Iphone, Android, Smartphone, Kobo Books, pdf, Kindle.
THE MALIBU CASE.
Or Whether Corporate Nudity should be part of the Dress Code.
THE ACAPULCO COCKTAIL.
Or How a single Drink can turn Thirst into A Traction with the Law.
THE CAYMAN AIR BANNER.
Or Going Where Your Money Goes to Keep an Eye on How it disappears.
THE BAHAMAS LOTION.
Or Discerning When the Notion of a Lotion is not Beauty but Dependence.
THE ABU DHABI CHANNEL.
Or Whether renting pleasure is different from owning it.
THE BAHRAIN BRODERIE.
Or Whether a Wedding can be Arranged as a Matter of Levity.
THE BELLAGIO WIKILEAK.
Or How to Rely on Information before the Information relies on You.
THE CUBAN RENEGADE.
Or Whether gold can be backed by a Renegade,
when money is backed by the cap of Castro.
THE SUGAR BABY.
Or Whether sugar can turn to salt when someone overlooks the honey.
THE MARBLE TOUCAN.
Or How those who want you to leave your place are those who should leave in the first place.
THE OUTDOOR SHOWER.
Or How a shower can bring good weather to the bottom line.